An Encyclopaedia on Chinese History and Literature

Qian Xizuo 錢熙祚

May 6, 2012 © Ulrich Theobald

Qian Xizuo 錢熙祚 (d. 1844) , courtesy name Xuezhi 雪枝 or Xizhi 錫之, was a book collector and writer of the late Qing period 清 (1644-1911). He hailed from Songjiang 松江 (modern Jinshan 金山, Shanghai). He died in 1844 in Beijing when he was waiting for an audience for the appointment to the post of subprefectural magistrate (tongpan 通判). In 1837 he erected the Zongsi Hall 宗祠堂 and an appended complex that was to house his large library, the Shoushan Hall 守山閣. The library building had four stories and was open for the public and so served eminent scholars like Gu Guanguang 顧觀光 (1799-1862), Li Changling 李長齡, Zhang Wenhu 張文虎 (1808-1885) and Qian Xitai 錢熙泰 (1812-1860) for their studies of rare ancient texts, especially for a text-critical project that included more than 80 different texts. The library complex was located at the shore of a lake and offered a beautiful view on the landscape.

During the Guangxu reign 光緒 (1875-1908) Qian Xizuo purchased remnants of Zhang Haipeng's 張海鵬 (1755-1816) series Mohai jinhu 墨海金壺 and Jieyueshanfang huichao 借月山房匯抄. Qian Xizuo took his chance to reconstruct the missing original parts by consulting the Wenlan Hall 文瀾閣 edition of the imperial series Siku quanshu 四庫全書. The result of this project were the series Shoushange congshu 守山閣叢書, Zhucong bielu 珠叢別錄 and Zhihai 指海. Gu Guanguang and Zhang Wenhu had participated in the careful reconstruction of the texts included in these valuable collections.

Qian Xizuo has also compiled two studies to the medical classic Huangdi neijing 黃帝內經. He had made important contributions for the preservation of rare and fragmentary texts.

Li Yu'an 李玉安, Chen Chuanyi 陳傳藝, ed. (1989). Zhongguo cangshujia cidian 中國藏書家辭典 (Wuhan: Hubei jiaoyu chubanshe), 260.